dcsimg

Read about online colleges for healthcare and the programs, degrees and training that may be available to students.

Online Health Degrees

Online degrees in health can help prepare students for a wide range of careers in the healthcare industry. These programs vary depending on the specific degree being pursued and the career path the student plans to enter. With an online healthcare degree, and the proper licensure, graduates may qualify to enter fields such as nursing, home health aid, dental assisting, healthcare administration or medical billing and coding.

Online Degrees in Health

Online healthcare schools typically provide students with the opportunity to complete their coursework remotely and on a schedule that fits their needs. As with campus-based studies, the curriculum content of an online program will depend on the degree being sought. In general, healthcare programs help students learn about the human body and medical science, preparing them for the specific tasks they'll approach in their future jobs. Due to the physical nature of health services, some degrees may only be available as hybrid programs, requiring students to complete hands-on training sessions in addition to their online coursework.

Healthcare programs remain popular because the healthcare industry is one of few that have continued to grow despite the economic recession. A 2012 Georgetown University study found that the healthcare industry should add 5.6 million new jobs by 2020, with nursing a particularly fast-growing profession. However, degree requirements for advancement in the healthcare field have also increased. While specific qualifications vary, many professions require that individuals pass state licensure or certification exams, particularly before practicing medicine.

Healthcare Degree Specializations

A number of different degrees and specializations fall under the umbrella category of healthcare. While physicians, surgeons and dentists all require doctoral level degrees that are generally not available online, students can train to become registered nurses, home health aides, physical therapists, medical assistants, occupational therapists, dental hygienists, massage therapists, or other healthcare professionals through online degree programs.

  • Associate Degree in Health - Generally completed in two years of full-time coursework, associate degrees are designed to quickly prepare students for an entry-level position in the healthcare field, such as cardiovascular technologist, dental hygienist, medical assisting, office billing and coding, and more. Coursework varies according to specific degree concentration. Some associate programs can be completed entirely online, while others may involve hands-on training sessions.
  • Bachelor's Degree in Health - Bachelor's degrees usually take four years of full-time study to complete. They're less often geared towards specific healthcare industry professions, but are considered the standard background required for careers like dietitian and nutritionist, occupational health and safety specialist, and recreational therapist. Bachelor's degrees in healthcare management or administration are available online as well.
  • Master's Degree in Health - A master's degree typically involves two years of additional study after a bachelor's degree is completed, and gives students more focused study in a particular field or profession. In the healthcare industry, a master's degree may help train students to become occupational therapists, physicians' assistants, and speech-language pathologists. As for online colleges for health, some master's degree in nursing programs or in healthcare management may be found available through online coursework.
  • Doctoral Degree in Health - A doctoral-level degree is required for many of the highest-paying careers in the healthcare industry. The time required to complete a doctorate program varies, but can be between three and six years beyond the completion of a bachelor's degree. At the doctoral level, online schools may offer degrees in healthcare administration or management, as well as a Doctor of Nursing Practice.

Related Careers in Healthcare

Depending on their particular degree, graduates of online healthcare programs may consider entering a number of different career paths. Often, one degree can serve as a stepping stone, allowing a graduate to transition into a more specialized field later in their career. Related occupations might include:

  • Medical and Health Services Managers - Healthcare administrators oversee medical and health services at a wide range of facilities. According to BLS, they may manage a single department within a larger facility, like a hospital, or supervise an entire clinic or practice themselves. These professionals generally need a bachelor's degree in a field such as healthcare administration or public health, although master's degrees are common as well.
  • Licensed Practical Nurse - Also called Licensed Vocational Nurses, LPNs work with doctors and registered nurses to provide basic care to patients in hospitals, clinics, nursing homes, or private homes. To become an LPN, individuals must earn a nursing degree from an accredited program and pass the NCLEX state licensing exams.
  • Sonographer - These healthcare workers use imaging equipment to detect sound waves and form images of the inside of a patient's body, commonly known as ultrasounds or sonograms. Sonographers specialize in a particular part of the body, such as OB-GYN sonography or abdominal sonography. The job typically requires an associate degree, although one-year certificate programs can be an option for people who already have training in related healthcare fields.

Healthcare Industry Trends

Growth in the healthcare industry has remained strong despite the recession, thanks in part to an aging baby boomer population, longer life spans and people leading more active lives than in the past. Careers related to caring for the elderly, like nurses and home health aides may see job opportunities continue to increase. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (bls.gov, 2012) projects especially large growth rates over the next decade for the following industries:

  • Medical and Health Services Managers - 22 percent nationwide from 2010 to 2020
  • Licensed Practical Nurses - 22 percent nationwide from 2010 to 2020
  • Sonographers - 44 percent nationwide from 2010 to 2020

Sources:
Dental Hygienists, Bureau of Labor Statistic Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2012-13, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/dental-hygienists.htm
"Healthcare Industry Will Create 5.6 Million More Jobs By 2020: Study," The Huffington Post, 2012, http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/06/21/health-care-job-creation_n_1613479.html
Healthcare, Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce, 2009, http://cew.georgetown.edu/healthcare/
Healthcare Occupations, Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2012, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/
Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses, Bureau of Labor Statistic Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2012-13, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/licensed-practical-and-licensed-vocational-nurses.htm
Medical and Health Services Managers, Bureau of Labor Statistic Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2012-13, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/Management/Medical-and-health-services-managers.htm

Refine School Matches
Hide filters
  • SUBJECT Clear All

    See More

  • DEGREE

    See More

  • PROGRAM TYPE

  • START TIME

    LOCATION
    Please enter valid US or Canada Zip.
            Results open in new window

            Showing schools in your area

            Prefer exploring options talking to our staff?
            Call toll free now: 1.855.330.6938
            Matching School Ads
            Healthcare - Online - Associate Degree
            • Prepare for a Health Care Career with an Online Degree from Keiser University. Get Started Today!
            • Keiser University has a variety of degree programs in the health care field including Medical Assisting, Medical Billing and Coding, Health Science and more!
            • From Medical Assisting to Health Science to Health Services Administration, Keiser can help you get started in the health care industry.
            • Keiser University has 40 years of experience in helping students reach their personal and professional goals.
            • We offer you the support and flexibility you need to fit education into your busy life with our one class at a time schedule
            • Online Courses
            MA: Medical Sciences: Business Management
            • Liberty University provides a worldclass education from a christ-centered worldview
            • 100% online programs at associate, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral levels
            • No standardized testing if student meets admission requirements
            • Accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
            • 95% of Liberty University students receive some form of financial aid
            Show more [+]
            • Accredited
            • Online Courses
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            PhD - Addictions
            • Northcentral University was founded in 1996 to provide working professionals around the world with unprecedented access to richly engaging, professionally relevant, and academically-rigorous education from a U.S. university.
            • As a regionally accredited, private, online and graduate-focused university, NCU offers doctoral, master’s and bachelor’s degrees in business, technology management, education, and psychology, as well as doctoral and master’s degrees in marriage and family therapy.
            • Accredited
            • Online Courses
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            BS in Health and Wellness

            Building on Purdue's mission to provide greater access to affordable, world-class education, Purdue University Globaldelivers a fully personalized online experience that's tailored to working adults. By opening the doors to adults who need flexibility to fit learning into their busy lives, we make it possible to achieve a high-quality education from a prestigious university system—completely online.

            • Online Courses
            B.S. in Health Studies
            • Impact your world with a degree from Walden. Start today!
            • Walden degree and certificate programs are designed for working professionals. Click for more information.
            • Receive personal attention from advisors in enrollment, financial aid, academics, and other support services to make the most of your online program.
            • Study worry-free knowing you have 24/7 access to Walden technical support.
            • Convenient start dates throughout the year
            • Accredited
            • Online Courses
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Medical Assistant (10-Month Diploma Program)
            UEI College , Sacramento
            • Dedicated to providing  career training since 1975.
            • Has 13 campus locations in Southern California and a campus in Morrow, GA.
            • Provides flexible class times including weekends.
            • Offers curriculum that ranges from 8 month diploma programs to 16-month Associate of Applied Science degree programs.
            • Has admissions professionals available to help students decide which diploma or degree program they should pursue.
            • Gives job placement assistance strengthened by relationships with local employers.
            Show more [+]
            • Accredited
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            MS in Nursing (from BSN) - Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner
            • Impact your world with a degree from Walden. Start today!
            • Walden degree and certificate programs are designed for working professionals. Click for more information.
            • Receive personal attention from advisors in enrollment, financial aid, academics, and other support services to make the most of your online program.
            • Study worry-free knowing you have 24/7 access to Walden technical support
            • Convenient start dates throughout the year
            • http://www.waldendegrees.com/6x2/prequal.jsp?redirected=Index&CLK=0&CCID=&QTR=&ZN=&ZV=&KY_T=
            • Prohibited by MSA ("Media Company shall not purchase any domains names that consist of, in whole or in part, the Laureate trademarks or service marks."). When filling out the form, directs to a page that says I don't meet admissions requirements, no matter what I answer. Using Walden to sell other schools on the sorry page.
            Show more [+]
            • Online Courses
            Medical Assistant
            • Offers career placement assistance services to recent graduates.
            • Our short-term allied health programs will give you the skills and knowledge to become a part of the exciting health care field.
            • Programs include Medical Office Specialist, Medical Assistant, Dental Assistant and Healthcare Administration.
            • Accredited by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES).
            • Main campus is located in Van Nuys, California, north of Los Angeles.
            Show more [+]
            • Accredited
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Medical Assisting
            Platt College , Ontario
            Good for Working Adults
            • A Los Angeles-based private college offering programs in medical sciences, legal studies, and graphic design since 1985.
            • Has weekend programs, including certified  veterinary technology, nurse assistant, and hemodialysis technician.
            • Showcases visual communication students’ artwork and design through campus magazine.
            • 3 campuses in Southern California.
            • Accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC).
            Show more [+]
            • Accredited
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Accelerated Programs
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Medical Assistant Program
            • Offers training in various types of massage therapy, physical therapy/sports rehab, and personal fitness training & wellness.
            • Teaches in an environment that promotes learning and encourages empathetic and compassionate therapists.
            • Career service professionals work directly with students from the start of their program, and help them pursue employment in day spas, luxury hotels, cruise ships, and other locations.
            • Students can work in the SOCHI Massage Clinic to gain experience and build their career skills.
            • Financial aid representatives help students develop a personalized financial plan to finance their tuition.
            Show more [+]
            • Accredited
            • Financial Aid